Wijnaldum, 24, signed for Newcastle this summer having starred with PSV Eindhoven in their title-winning season, hitting 18 goals under Phillip Cocu.
The playmaker is now looking to make a name for himself in the Premier League, but his exploits in the Netherlands have now been rewarded.
Wijnaldum was crowned Dutch Footballer of the Year for 2015 earlier this week, beating off competition from the likes of Arjen Robben and Memphis Depay in the process.
Speaking after receiving the award, Wijnaldum credited his former PSV boss Cocu, PSV sporting director Marcel Brands, as well as Manchester United boss Van Gaal, as quoted by The Chronicle.
"I want to thank Phillip Cocu, Marcel Brands and also Louis van Gaal," said Wijnaldum. "He (Van Gaal) dared to take me to the World Cup after an injury when I hadn’t played for a long time," he added.
Wijnaldum played his part at the World Cup in Brazil last summer, as the Netherlands secured third place under Van Gaal before his move to United.
At 24, Wijnaldum should still have his best years ahead of him whilst at Newcastle - and he will be looking to claim more prestigious awards in the near future.